Exercises That Stop Scoliosis


Dr. Aatif Siddiqui


January 6, 2023

There are many newer treatments that include scoliosis exercises. Schroth physical therapist focus on breathing mechanics, repetitive motions and other physical therapy uses mirror-image type exercises, but the best scoliosis exercises are those that help create a new “Posture Memory” while strengthening the core muscles. This approach teaches the brain how to hold the spine in a less-twisted, straighter posture automatically.

Scoliosis has been considered primarily a spinal abnormality since the Ancient Greeks’ times. All of the therapies developed for it are orthopedic, mechanical, or physical in nature because they have been conceived in this way for so long. These efforts, rather than being early-stage identification of at-risk patients and preventive intervention, are attempts to return the “toothpaste back into the tube”. Scoliosis patients have been stretched, dragged, pushed, hammered, stepped on, and twisted in practically every conceivable manner throughout the years. Scoliosis, on the other hand, continues to have no cure or solution. The scoliosis condition is still not cured by surgical methods today. Curves gradually rise over time and have extremely high long-term complications, despite surgical fusion.

Just a few of the most popular scoliosis treatments from across the globe, as well as a history of when they were utilized, are listed below for your reference. It’s worth noting that until very recently, none of the aforementioned descriptions ever mentioned or depicted anything to do with genetic, hormonal, nutritional, or environmental aspects of scoliosis.


“Many patients can avoid a brace and fusion surgery with strengthening exercises for scoliosis that improve posture memory.”
-Clayton J. Stitzel DC

Table of Contents

Specific exercises for curvature of the spine

The ScoliSMART doctors give credit to all physical therapist using the Schroth method and other exercises to help people with scoliosis. Especially helping children avoid surgery. But, not all scoliosis exercises work the same. Voluntary movement exercises, like a side plank or ones done at a gym, DO NOT create a new posture memory. Only “Reflexive Response” exercises influence posture memory. 

A brace and scoliosis surgery only focus on improving curve measurement on an x-ray.  ScoliSMART scoliosis exercises target the cause of scoliosis by retraining the posture memory. This process creates a new muscle memory to hold the curved spine straighter over time. In fact, in our peer-reviewed and independently published “success rate” study 93% of patients did not need fusion surgery and their scoliosis curves reduced by 9-15 degrees on average. Get free recommendations on scoliosis exercises sent directly to your email.

Reflexive response exercises occur when the body automatically responds to weight that unbalances the body’s center of gravity. For example, the whole body pulls to the left when carrying a heavy bucket of water in your right hand. These movements become automated habits in our brains. This same concept can create a new and straighter posture memory in the brains of scoliosis patients. Kids and adults

Why is this important? Most cases are adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (of unknown cause), yet the curve progression stems from a neuro-hormonal problem with the brain’s control of the spine in response to gravity (Posture Memory). This occurs during periods of rapid growth spurts in kids and teens

Posture control/memory is an automatic reflex. Human beings do not have any direct control over spinal alignment. We don’t have to think about standing up and resisting gravity. Our brains pull out the mental picture out of our posture memory and remember how to do it. As infants, we keep trying to stand until we can do it without focusing on the task. ScoliSMART reflexive response exercises stop scoliosis because they form a new posture memory. Scoliosis comes in many forms (adolescent idiopathic scoliosis being the most common), each with its own set of diagnostic criteria and specific age of onset. Clinical testingnutrient therapies and specific exercises that will benefit your child with scoliosis, especially if action is taken immediately to avoid further curve progression.

Adult scoliosis curve reduction exercises often concentrate on correcting posture collapse and reducing the asymmetric load on the spine, which in the long term reduces the chance of development. Adolescent scoliosis exercisers concentrate on allowing natural vertebrae growth. It’s also possible that better mobility and biomechanical alterations in the spine’s soft tissues may help prevent progress. Reflexive Response Training, which uses involuntary scoliosis exercises to reeducate the mind to perceive a new center of equilibrium in the body, is another way of doing it. Patients may create additional neuromuscular connections that assist restore the posture and align of the spine by including the ScoliSMART Activity Suit and other specialized equipment with precise scoliosis exercises.

Regardless of age or the severity of scoliosis, posture memory re-training is effective. ScoliSMART healed or reduced the curves of 9 out of every 10 people in a clinical trial, with mid-to upper-back curves reducing by 6 degrees or more in two-thirds of cases. ScoliSMART BootCamp, a ten-day program for patients with curves measuring at least 25 degrees, is ideal for adult scoliosis warriors who want to jump-start their treatment. Patients may spend time understanding how to do scoliosis exercises and continue their therapy at home after completing moderate-intensity training. Surgery isn’t the only option just because a patient’s curves have persisted into adulthood. Even adults with severe scoliosis may stop the progress and achieve curve improvement via the proper scoliosis exercises, even if early treatment is best.

Scoliosis Bootcamp Program

To learn more about how to treat the whole scoliosis condition and not only the curve, connect with our passionate providers at ScoliSMART. To explore a non-brace/ non-surgical treatment for your child’s scoliosis problem, you may schedule a no-cost Zoom or phone consultation with a ScoliSMART doctor. Please get in touch with us today!

Treating the Whole Scoliosis Condition, Not Just the Spinal Curve

Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis has several genetic variations that may be examined easily and inexpensively! Even better, all 28 functional genetic types associated to idiopathic scoliosis (which have been identified at the time of this writing) have been scientifically established using known nutrient treatment therapies. To put it another way, we may easily identify any given idiopathic scoliosis patient’s genetic “scratches,” and then choose the suitable natural supplementation and initiate non-invasive early stage scoliosis therapy. Before they exhibit any signs of acquiring a spinal curve and beginning nutritional therapies to make up for their genetic deficiencies, this technology might even be utilized to identify which youngsters are genetically “high risk” for obtaining adult idiopathic scoliosis. Although various hypotheses, ideas, notions, and beliefs about the scoliosis etiology vary and contradict one another, the fundamental fact that adolescent idiopathic scoliosis is a exceedingly complicated illness is common to them all. Only an extremely antiquated Cobb angle measuring system (designed by Dr. Cobb) has been used to examine scoliosis curvatures on x-ray in the past. The combined tilt of the most tilted vertebrae at the upper and lower ends of the curve is summarized in this 1938 publication by John Cobb. Clearly, this is insufficient, giving doctors, moms, and patients just a narrow spectrum of knowledge with which to make critical treatment choices. The use of Cobb angle measurements of curvature on x-ray to assess scoliosis treatment possibilities and patient outcomes is a serious shortcoming in the current management of the scoliosis epidemic. We are going to have to start thinking about scoliosis differently in order to change the future of treating it; the spinal curvature seen on an x-ray should be recognized as the main and most obvious “symptom” of scoliosis.

Genetic Testing and Early Stage Scoliosis Intervention

While the technology seems to be available to identify youngsters who are genetically predisposed to develop idiopathic scoliosis and early-stage scoliosis treatment with highly tailored genetic supplementation for scoliosis, this will need further and faster study, wider adoption by the existing medical community, and acceptance by parents as well as patients.

Treatment Beyond the Spinal Curve

Because it affects so many body systems and is organized on so many body levels, scoliosis should be referred to as a “condition.” The structure of our bodies is based on genetics, and genetic codes called variants are common throughout our species. These variations have a negative impact on genetic performance and may disrupt the proteins and enzymes that a certain gene generates. The metabolic pathways that link genetic products to produce more complex substances such as neurotransmitters and hormones might be severely affected by this interruption. The communication system between your brain and body is made up of neurotransmitters and hormones. When adolescent children with the genetic mutation combination for idiopathic scoliosis start to develop quickly, causing spinal curvature known as adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, the disruption in brain-to-body communication becomes readily apparent.


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ScoliSMART Clinics is committed to treating the WHOLE scoliosis condition, not only the curve. Genetic & clinical testing with targeted nutrient therapies, expert in-office treatment programs, and the world’s only ScoliSMART Activity Suit provides patients of all ages with the most comprehensive, most effective, and least invasive treatment options available worldwide.

Why Curvature Progression Skyrockets in Curves Over 25 Degrees

Idiopathic scoliosis over 25 degrees may progress to 50 degrees or more with or without a brace. This is when doctors start recommending scoliosis fusion surgery. This is frustrating because the same doctors often suggest “wait and watch” for mild scoliosis (curves less than 25 degrees). They only recommend treatment once the scoliosis curve progression already has momentum.

ScoliSMART doctors never recommend waiting. Early intervention is crucial because scoliosis has a “twisting” effect that skyrockets the chances scoliosis will progress after curves reach 25 degrees. 

The spinal bending and rotation caused by scoliosis, changes and accelerates during puberty (during growth spurts) when a curve is more than 25 degrees. Like a twisting rubber band, increased twisting makes the spine bend even more. ScoliSMART focuses on treating the whole scoliosis condition. Our approach can stop the spinal curve progression, reduce the scoliosis curvature (Cobb angle on x-ray), while letting kids still be kids.  Get recommendations for preventing bracing for scoliosis sent directly to your email

Factors that Affect Curve Progression

Scoliosis development does not cease once you reach spinal maturity, as is commonly believed. Four out of every ten adult patients will have curve advancement over the course of two decades. The rise is moderate for most people, but it can accumulate overtime.

“It has been known for many years that scoliosis can continue to progress after skeletal maturity,” says spinal expert Alessandra Negrini. “Its evolution is slow and insidious and involves both the anatomic and the functional aspect of the curve.”

Whether you had idiopathic scoliosis as a child or have developed de novo (new) scoliosis in adulthood, curve progression is generally influenced by four main factors:

Skeletal growth
When the spine is still developing, scoliosis speeds up, while once it has finished growing, it slows down. On a scale of 0 to 5, doctors determine skeletal maturity by measuring adult bone growth. Those with a 0 or 1 rating have a 68% chance of seeing curve progress, whereas those with a 2 to 4 rating only see 23%.

Curves over 30 degrees are 10 times more likely to progress in girls than boys, and idiopathic scoliosis affects more females than males. The rate of scoliosis in men and women decreases as patients reach adulthood. Women, on the other hand, may be more likely to develop degenerative scoliosis as they enter menopause and become osteoporotic. When estrogen is introduced during early teenage growth spurts and when estrogen is removed as patients reach or terminate menopause (leading to loss of bone density and bone mass), we observe rapid curve progress in female scoliosis patients.

Curve pattern and size 

Curves are more likely to progress depending on certain characteristics. The two curve patterns most likely to progress are thoracic spine curves, which occur on the right side 90 percent of the time, and lumbar curves, which are commonly found on the left. Size is also a factor to consider. Curves that reach 50 degrees or higher are likely to progress faster than smaller curves when they measure more than 30 Cobb degrees at skeletal maturity.


Adults and children may find age to be a useful indicator of scoliosis progression. Idiopathic scoliosis is the most common type of idiopathic scoliosis, which affects teenagers throughout adolescence. The chance of curve progression increases as a child gets older. Idiopathic conditioners usually have a sluggish and steady progress as they reach adulthood. The opposite is more common with de novo scoliosis. The risk of degenerative scoliosis development rises as people age, accompanied by bone density loss. The development of the curves can also be influenced by postural collapse and subsequent spinal degeneration. Many individuals believe that a home urine test that is shipped to a lab for analysis is the only way to determine bone health accurately, conveniently, and cheaply. Here’s more information on the testing service.

Evolution of Scoliosis Treatment

Hippocrates (Greece) is thought to have written the earliest known record of scoliosis about 400 B.C. Galen coined the word “scoliosis” (literal translation: “crookedness”) in about 200 A.D. Around 650 A.D., the first back bracing experiments were done. By fastening patients with idiopathic scoliosis to wooden sticks, he was able to determine the severity of their condition. In 1575 (France), the first metal scoliosis brace was designed. The first person to try surgical scoliosis treatment by severing the spinal tendons and ligaments was Jules René Guérin (French) in 1865. The efforts of the patients to alleviate distortion and straighten the curve were unsuccessful.

The scoliosis spine could be imaged for the first time in 1876, thanks to X-rays. Katharina Schroth, a brace-treated scoliosis sufferer from Dresden, Germany, chose to create an exercise-based theory for curing scoliosis in 1921. In the 1950s, Paul Harrington started using a single metal rod surgically fastened at the top and bottom of the scoliosis curve in adolescent patients; while it didn’t offer much curve reduction, it helped to retard the growth of the curve. The Milwaukee and Boston braces were two of the most notable braces developed in the second part of the twentieth century. The double rod and pedicle screw hardware (used in scoliosis fusion procedures to this day) was first developed by French physicians Cotrel and Dubousset in the 1980s.

In the early 2000s, the first posture memory re-training ideas and treatment approaches started to take shape. In 2009, surgeons began surgical treatment on skeletally immature patients using vertebral body staples and tethers to control spinal growth. In 2011, the first scoliosis activity suit research and data collection began. Dr. was released in 2013. The discovery of neurotransmitter pattern abnormalities associated with idiopathic scoliosis was discussed by Mark Morningstar at the SOSORT conference. In 2019, researchers discovered functional genomic variation patterns that are thought to be connected to the etiology and prognosis of idiopathic scoliosis.

Regular Chiropractic Care for Scoliosis

The Chiropractic profession seems like the natural and obvious choice for treating adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Their entire career and training focuses on the spine and vertebrae, so thoracic scoliosis or lumbar scoliosis should be a natural fix, but the published research has produced mixed results. Traditional chiropractor adjustment with posture counselling and shoe lifts had little to no effect on the treatment of idiopathic scoliosis. However, a more comprehensive approach also using nutrition and scoliosis exercises proved be much more effective, preventing the need for scoliosis surgery 93% of the time.

Schroth Physical Therapy, Pilates, and Yoga May Also Benefit Adult Scoliosis

While the reflexive response approach, featuring the ScoliSMART Activity Suit, is very effective for reducing back pain and discomfort, several other approached for treating adult scoliosis have shown promise for improving quality of life in adults as well. SOSORT member Physical therapist often use Schroth and bracing to help stabilize the lower back muscles of adult patients with severe scoliosis. Schroth exercises target the torso symmetry and spine rotation through self-correction repetitions and deep breaths. Some types of scoliosis of scoliosis may find following exercises challenging (Ex: cerebral palsy), but modifications can be made by the physiotherapist.

Depending on the degree of curvature, some patients find Pilates and yoga helpful to maintain good posture and is becoming more popular in the United States, despite lack of recognition from the SRS. The pelvis, rib cage, abs, upper back, and opposite side of the curve (generally the right side in lumbar scoliosis and left side in thoracic scoliosis). As with Schroth, neutral position, mobility, and deep breath repetitions are emphasized.

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ScoliSMART Clinics is committed to treating the WHOLE scoliosis condition, not only the curve. Genetic & clinical testing with targeted nutrient therapies, expert in-office treatment programs, and the world’s only ScoliSMART Activity Suit provides patients of all ages with the most comprehensive, most effective, and least invasive treatment options available worldwide.